Part-Time MBA Student Awarded IMA’s Certified Management Accountant Scholarship

The Raymond A. Mason School of Business would like to recognize and congratulate Part-Time MBA student Marjorie “Taylor” Day for earning the International Management Accounting (IMA) Certified Management Accountant (CMA) Scholarship.

Like the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) credential, the CMA is a specialized designation geared towards professionals working in corporate accounting and corporate finance. The IMA’s CMA Scholarship is worth nearly $3,000 and covers the full cost of preparation materials, testing, and certification.

“I am most excited to have the credentialing because in my position as a tax accountant, it will be beneficial to my department and my team, and it will also help me push forward to achieve a managerial position either with my current company or another organization in the future,” Day said. “The CMA validates that you have the skills to look at accounting from the perspective of a manager related to things like forecasting, budgeting, and data analysis, and using that information to make informed decisions critical to an organization’s financial health.”

Today, Day is a tax accountant with Dollar Tree & Family Dollar, a position that she earned because she chose to pursue the business analytics concentration as a Part-Time MBA student. Prior to enrolling in the program, the Virginia Beach native studied for two semesters at Eastern Virginia Medical School in the biomedical research sciences program. She originally wanted to pursue a career in research following her undergraduate experience at Old Dominion University but her time in a lab made her realize that a career switch into business was a more suitable path for her personality.

“I have a bachelor’s degree in psychology and some people may look at that and say, how does an MBA correlate? Why pursue a business degree?” she said. “There are a lot of similar skills involved in the two and I quickly discovered science was not for me. A friend connected me with the admissions team at the Mason School and since enrolling in the program, I’ve enjoyed it immensely. I know I was able to pursue a new career based on what I learned as a Part-Time MBA student and have applied it to the work I do, specifically in the area of business analytics, in my current role.”

According to the IMA’s 2021 Global Salary Survey, CMAs between the ages of 20-29 can earn 37 percent more in total compensation than non-CMAs globally. Day hopes that by achieving the CMA designation, she will open up more doors for upward mobility, both financially and otherwise, throughout her career in business.

“The CMA Scholarship will be of particular help to Taylor as she pursues her current career,” said Chris McCoy, Assistant Professor of Accounting at the Mason School. “It has been a joy for me to teach part-time MBA students for the first time this summer and it has definitely increased that joy to help a student advance her career.”

The CMA certification has served as the benchmark for management accountants for nearly 50 years. Students may be nominated for the scholarship if they attend an accredited college or university, and demonstrate high academic achievement. McCoy was the faculty member who discussed the opportunity with Day and ultimately submitted her name for consideration.

“I am incredibly grateful to Professor McCoy for connecting me with the scholarship,” Day said. “This opportunity will allow me to continue to climb the ladder, and I am excited to see how far my degree and credentials will take me. I am planning to take several months off from academics following my graduation from William & Mary in December. But I hope to begin studying for the exam by early spring and take the test by next fall.”